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Professional Development Used to Enhance K-5 Teachers’ Competencies Working with English Language Learners 

Tiffany Nichole Gardner Bennett
West Chester University, United States of America

Abstract. Over the past decade, the United States education system has predicted a significant increase in the number of English Language Learners (ELLs) enrolled in public schools. A substantial number of teachers who interact with ELLs lack the preparedness to support their student’s academic needs. Research has shown that the lack of professional development (PD) debars teachers from receiving efficacious resources to support English Language Learners. Most professional development (PD) provided for teachers excludes addressing ELL’s content. The absence of PD specifically focused on ELLs has left many teachers entering the profession not adequately trained to engage and support ELL students. The types of PD described by teachers tend to give the bare minimum coverage of how to work with ELLs rather than go in-depth on the issues that prohibit ELL students’ ability to understand the learning content. The conceptual framework incorporated in this exploratory research will be Thomas Guskey’s theory of teacher change to focus on the goals of professional development. This exploratory research will examine PD to further understand which delivery modes are optimal to address a major deficit in knowledge regarding PD training that limits teachers’ competencies to understand and support ELLs.

Keywords: competencies, English Language Learners, learning outcomes, professional development, teachers

To Be or Not to Be a Great Educator, 2022. Proceedings of ATEE Annual Conference
Riga: University of Latvia Press, 2023. 985 p.
EdL. Daniela
ISBN 978-9934-36-019-0